“Pelkor looked him dead in the eye. ‘Are you ready? The fate of the Velde will be transferred to your shoulders the instant that your transformation is complete.’ San-Ven’s gaze dropped to the ground, and he trembled slightly as sudden hesitation ransacked his body. Pelkor regarded him silently for a moment. ‘It is no great thing to be afraid,’ he said gently. ‘However it is everything to persist in spite of.’ San-Ven’s head came up. ‘But what exactly am I supposed to do? You are offering to bestow upon me this great ability- this weapon even- with which to go to war… and I am at a loss as to how I will successfully do so! My natural abilities afford me far greater advantage, if for nothing else but familiarity alone.’ Pelkor’s voice grew stern.
‘The Wings are not to be made light of, nor perceived through hopelessness. It is the strength of heart, which drew you to this powerful place, that will carry you on into the necessary understanding of the Wings.’ San-Ven remained silent. He knew the wisdom of the old man was unparalleled, as was his insistence on a heart of courage. There was no more talk that needed to be exchanged. He had come here for this very purpose- to attain the Wings and gain an edge over the enemy. Cowardice was no longer an option at this point, and Pelkor would not tolerate such goings on in this sacred and powerful place for very long. This was it. If there was a chance at victory, it lay here… in his personal transformation.
San-Ven steeled himself and spoke two words. ‘Do it.’
The faintest of smiles passed through the old man’s eyes, and he stepped forward to place one firm, wrinkled palm over San-Ven’s lashes and forehead, and the other on the back of his neck. Pelkor’s gruff voice was slightly less abrasive as he spoke his final words. ‘When the transformation is complete you will see things differently at first. You will still be here, but won’t recognize the place. I will still be in front of you, but you will not see me. Perception is an art form to be learned along the journey. But as you go, do not ever forget to keep your form… Chest out; Wings up.'”
(excerpt from a book not yet published)
No Man’s Jesus
And here we are. Humans. People. Buhddists. Atheists. Christians. Catholics. Thousands of religions and sub-religions spawned over centuries – drawn to a peak in modern society – trying to solve that riddle known as Jesus. This mysterious and powerful man who turned culture and religious protocol upon its head, reformed the stream of history around the contour of His inner being that we might never fully escape it. Here for us, yet not bound by us. Died and rose for us, yet giving us the option of what to do with our own lives. Serving us, but yet lording over us.
He is the perfect mystery.
And in that untame-able mystery have we left Him, for the comforting embrace of Reason.
But with good cause have we not?
“Go ye into all the world, and preach the gospel to every creature. He that believeth and is baptized shall be saved; but he that believeth not shall be damned. And these signs shall follow them that believe; In my name shall they cast out devils; they shall speak with new tongues; They shall take up serpents; and if they drink any deadly thing, it shall not hurt them; they shall lay hands on the sick and they shall recover.” ~Mark 16:15-18 (KJV)
These are the parting words of Jesus Himself. To very imperfect disciples mind you… Imperfect disciples who exploded the ministry and miracles of Jesus around the globe… and yet-
How many times, as believers particularly, have we gotten sick? Have we “cast out devils in His name” only to be met with minimal change if any at all? He practically guarantees that through belief and baptism we will be superheroes as we go through these trials, but more often than not- we are just civilians. Civilians possessed of an unreliable hope that does not physically produce. He seems to be a Jesus for Himself- not for men.
“But seek ye first the kingdom of God and his righteousness; and all these things shall be added unto you.” ~Matthew 6:33 (KJV)
“Jesus said unto him, ‘If thou canst believe, all things are possible to him that believeth.'” ~Mark 9:23 (KJV)
“And Jesus said ‘Somebody hath touched me: for I perceive that virtue is gone out of me.’ And when the woman saw that she was not hid, she came trembling, and falling down before him, she declared unto him before all the people for what cause she had touched him, and how she was healed immediately. And he said unto her, ‘Daughter, be of good comfort: thy faith hath made thee whole; go in peace.” ~Luke 8:46-48 (KJV, emphasis added)
“Verily, verily I say unto you, he that believeth on me the works that I do shall he do also; and greater works than these shall he do; because I go unto my Father.” ~John 14:12 (KJV, emphasis added)
“And a certain man lame from his mother’s womb was carried, whom they laid daily at the gate of the temple which is called Beautiful, to ask alms of them that entered into the temple; Who seeing Peter and John about to go into the temple asked an alms. And Peter, fastening his eyes upon him with John, said, ‘Look on us.’ And he gave heed unto them, expecting to receive something of them. Then Peter said, ‘Silver and gold have I none; but such as I have give I thee: In the name of Jesus Christ of Nazareth rise up and walk.’ And he took him by the right hand, and lifted him up: and immediately his feet and ankle bones received strength.‘” ~Acts 3:2-7 (KJV, emphasis added)
This is merely one verse from the first five books of the New Testament… there are literally tons of such recordings.
This is quite a different depiction of church power, and faith in Christ than is commonly seen today, yet this is what Christ offers when He states “Behold I stand at the door of your heart and knock.” (Revelation 3:20) Receiving His lordship and covenant is not a vain thing, so- what the heck?!
We have had this incredibly potent force (weapon even) introduced to us- placed into our care and governance- and we have no idea how to use it. As San-Ven states, “I am at a loss as to how I will successfully do so! My natural abilities afford me far greater advantage, if for nothing else but familiarity alone.”
This is us in a nutshell. Faith statements boldly proclaimed, but with an open ended date just in case… while we put in work with the gifts and abilities already afforded to us. For the Christian it should be very obvious that something- is missing. For the non-Christian it should be just as obvious, but for different reasons… I believe it was C.S. Lewis who pointed out that our inner cry for resolve not met by any of the finite solutions of the physical realms indicates that not only is there another realm (the spiritual) from which our true solutions hail from- but also that we, bearing these “gaps” within our inner being, belong to this realm also.
Perception is an art form learned along the journey
I wish I knew precisely, but I do not… which is fine because this entry was not meant to deliver you a sliced, diced, and preserved answer. It was to gently pry your eyes open to the truths of reality lying all around us… To expose you to “the Matrix” and give you personal opportunity to dig further… know more. Whatever we have been doing… hasn’t been working. Visually, something is off. Just as the Pharisees and political rulers, and even the people of the land, did not see Jesus properly and thus were not able to reap what He was attempting to sow… so also are we not seeing something properly… We’re not grasping this Jesus fellow.
But as you go, do not ever forget to keep your form… Chest out; Wings up.
Chest out… Wings up…
Heart out [in the light, driving our confidence]… Jesus firmly framed in our eyes and guiding us into all truth…
Chest out… Wings up…
Not allowing this realization or this deficit to smear our face in the muddy residue of error’s footprint, but rather continuing boldly on with greater awareness. Seeking not the Church for the definition of Jesus, but rather Jesus for His explanation of Himself, and then deriving our sense of church from that. Not throwing out everything we have believed, however tentatively, but finding the greater things to believe and the right way to believe it.
Giving ourselves over to personal experience, however gritty and trying it may become, with this Jesus guy… Maximizing every inch of our life as often as possible, but with the added – or perhaps encompassing – element of Jesus’ touch. Of His power. Of His ways. Nobody can deny a miracle; you will always find a populace flocking around the place of transformation.
Fight through this with me… Go with me into the heart of truth… into the proper knowledge and understanding of Jesus… knowing that by doing so we are entering into His wild frontier of His untame-able territory. But, as any bird will tell you, flight is worth the terror of plunging out of the nest.